A celebration was held today at the Hogansburg-Akwesasne Volunteer Fire Department’s Station #2 on Kawehno:ke (Cornwall Island) to unveil a brand new $345,000 fire engine equipped with the most modern and up to date technologies and tools needed to fight fire.

The volunteer fire department – which is part of the larger department that includes Station #1 in Hogansburg and Station #3 in Tsi Snaihne – approached the Mohawks of Akwesasne Community Settlement Trust for sponsorship of a much-needed new fire engine to replace a 20-year tanker (water truck) that Station #2 was utilizing.  The Trust approved the request for the new vehicle, and the remaining $35,720 needed to equip the engine was supplied by the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne.

“We would like to thank the Trust and MCA,” said Ben Benedict, Station #2 captain and member of the fire engine committee.  “This engine is replacing a 20-year tanker that supplied water…with this new truck we can fight a structure fire.”

The new engine is the HAVFD’s 43rd vehicle, including trucks, boats, tankers, engines and other vehicles used throughout the districts, in both the southern and northern portions of Akwesasne territory.  The HAVFD proudly serves the entire community. The Kawehno:ke Station #2 now has two fully equipped fire engines to fight structure fires; therefore if there are two fires taking place at the same time, they are now well prepared to combat both.

“The Hogansburg-Akwesasne Volunteer Fire Department is by far one of the most valuable assets the community of Akwesasne has,” said Patty Francis, representing the Mohawks of Akwesasne Community Settlement Trust.  “The tireless efforts of each and every one of the first responders here in Akwesasne is a testament to the commitment and excellence of our fire department and the work that they do in keeping Akwesasne safe.”

The event was attended by many volunteer firefighters, representatives from the Trust, the president of M&L Supply which equipped the truck, and Kawehno:ke district chiefs from the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne.

“The Mohawk Council is proud to support our volunteer fire department and we are grateful for the services they provide the entire community," said Kawehno:ke Chief Dennis Chaussi. "With this new fire engine on the road, the residents and properties of Kawehno:ke will be safer and we can't thank the HAVFD enough for that.  It is our pleasure to provide the final sponsorship needed to get the truck equipped and ready for the road.”